The political tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia over the control of shipments on the Strait of Hormuz has led Saudi Arabia to plan construction of a water canal in Yemen. The proposed canal is to be named after the Saudi King “Salman”. This canal shall act as a link between the Persian Gulf and Saudi Arabia bypassing the Strait of Hormuz.
Sa’ad Ibn Omar, the Head of Arab Studies Center in Riyadh, revealed on Wednesday that “Studies are underway on the construction of a waterway which starts from a part of Saudi Arabia’s water border in Khour al-Adid area between the UAE and Qatar and stretches 950km to the Arabian Sea.”
Since Yemen has Hadhramaut, al-Shabvah and al-Mohrah coasts abutting the Arabian Sea plans are underway to build the Salman Canal, so that Qatar, the UAE and Kuwait can export their oil to other world states through this canal instead of having to pass via the Strait of Hormuz which is controlled by Iran.
Sa’ad Ibn Omar is quoted to have said, “ 630km of the 950-km canal would be in Saudi Arabia and 320km of it would be built in Yemen with a width of 150m and depth of 25m. Anyway, the distance to be sailed by ships through the Salman canal towards the Arabian Sea will halve compared to the Strait of Hormuz.” He added that $80bln would be required for the implementation of Salman canal project.
Saudi Arabia is also considering alternative paths for the canal which include Oman to replace Yemen if necessary. Saudi Arabia would have to tackle the geographical problems while planning construction of the canal, given its 700 m altitude above sea level in areas of Yemen or Oman, while the lands in Saudi Arabia are at a height of 300m above sea level.
Source: Fars News Agency